By: Odiboh-John Samuel Osaro
Mental health is an important component of health and well-being that underpins our individual and collective abilities to make decisions, build relationships, and shape the world we live in. It’s more than the absence of mental disorder; it entails how we are able to operate psychologically, emotionally, and socially with others.
Mental health encompasses emotional, psychological, and social well-being, influencing cognition, perception, and behavior. It likewise determines how an individual handles stress, interpersonal relationships, and decision-making.
There are many depressed persons in Nigeria currently, which shows the prevalence rate of depressed people at 23.1%. The main cause of depression can be linked to life events, which include stress, isolation, and a lack of support. Depression is caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain that causes symptoms like a low elevation in someone’s mood.
Depression results from a complex interaction of social, psychological, and biological factors. People who have experienced adversity in their lives (such as unemployment, bereavement, or traumatic events) are more likely to develop depression. But it can be treated with the right counseling and medications. Depression is classified into levels, which include melancholia, psychosis, and antenatal or postnatal depression.
When depressed persons do not seek counseling or other measures like medications, it can lead to suicidal thoughts or feelings. The most common symptom of depression is withdrawal, where most people do not feel their pain.
While there are many resources available for people who may be suffering from mental illness, to get better, the person has to acknowledge that they have a problem and be willing to seek help instead of trying to solve their problems. It is critical that people create a safe space for people suffering from depression in order to help lift their spirits or make them feel loved.
Depression, like other disorders such as diabetes, can be effectively managed and controlled by combining a healthy lifestyle with treatments.